Can home automation help elderly residents?

9th June 2015
Can home automation help elderly residents?

The tech fraternity have been getting increasingly excited about the prospect of home automation becoming a mainstream trend – and with some justification.

The notion of even the most mundane household devices and gadgets being connected to the internet and able to communicate with each other could lead to our lives being revolutionised.

Countless processes could be carried out automatically and our appliances and other electronics could act far more intuitively and intelligently. As a result, they will not only work better for us, but help us save energy and cut costs along the way.

But as with any technological advance on this scale, it's easy to assume that it's only the younger demographic who will really benefit. After all, how many older people are still to get to grips with email or understand what a hashtag is?

Yet it is senior citizens who could benefit the most from home automation – and not just because it means they will enjoy more responsive and intelligent household goods and the ability to monitor their energy usage.

Home automation could be a particularly big asset for those elderly people who are highly dependent on external support to get by, such as those who need their grown-up children to check in on them every few days to see if they are alright.

Why? Because the monitoring technology allows these support channels to keep an eye on what senior citizens are doing. If automated systems are in place to monitor and control sockets in their home, it will be possible to see what they are doing with items such as kettles and electric blankets.

As a result, we can be assured that our elderly loved ones have got up and are going about their daily routine exactly as normal.

Elderly people who are scared of losing their independence don't always appreciate regular visits from family members to see if they are okay. So home automation technology can give relatives the ability to keep an eye on them without being massively intrusive.

And crucially, the monitoring technology allows family members to detect a lack of activity. As a result, they will know it is time to either ring up or pop round to see their elderly relative. While there may not necessarily be cause for concern, it's good to have this reassurance day after day that a loved one of advancing years is enjoying their life and going about their regular activities.

It's another indication of how home automation can make our lives easier. The welfare of an elderly relative can often be a cause for concern, so anything that can potentially alleviate this worry without being intrusive is sure to be welcomed by many.

And it not only helps us concerned relatives. It empowers elderly people to live more independent lives without having us constantly checking if they are alright. So it sounds to us like a win-win scenario for everyone concerned.

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